The 2nd Annual Chita Rivera Awards Will Be Held Sunday May 20
The 2nd annual Chita Rivera Awards (www.ChitaRiveraAwards.com) will take place on Sunday, May 20, 2018 at the NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts (566 LaGuardia Place off of Washington Square Park), it was announced today by Nikki Feirt Atkins, Founder and Producing Artistic Director of American Dance Machine for the 21st Century (www.ADM21.org) and Joe Lanteri, Founder and Executive Director of the New York City Dance Alliance Foundation (www.NYCDAFoundation.net). ADM21 has joined forces with the NYC Dance Alliance Foundation to present this year's Awards. Atkins, Lanteri along with Patricia Watt are the Executive Producers of the Chita Rivera Awards.
The nominations for the 2nd annual Chita Rivera Awards will be announced on Friday, April 27th.
Carrying the namesake of one of the great dance icons of the American musical theater, the mission of the Chita Rivera Awards is to celebrate dance and choreographic excellence - past, present and future. The awards will honor the superb achievement of each nominee, while recognizing the immeasurable talents and passion of every theatrical choreographer and dancer. Additionally, through education and scholarships, the awards are committed to nurturing future generations, as well as preserving notable dance history.
Nominators will consider outstanding choreography, featured dancers and ensemble in shows on Broadway and Off Broadway, as well as, outstanding choreography in film, that opened in the 2017-2018 season. Nominations for the productions under consideration this season will be determined by the designated Nominating Committees. There are separate Nominating Committees for Broadway, Off Broadway and Film. There is an Awarding Committee for Broadway, which determines the final nominations that are received from the Broadway Nominations Committee. Honorees of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Outstanding Contribution to Musical Theater Award, and Outstanding Contribution to the Arts and Humanities Award as well as when tickets go on sale will be announced in the coming weeks.
The 2018 Awarding Committee includes: Chair: Sylviane Gold Ted Chapin Gary Chryst Anna Kisselgoff Robert LaFosse Donna McKechnie Wendy Perron Lee Roy Reams Broadway Nominating Committee includes: Chair: Wendy Federman Nikki Feirt Atkins Ted Chapin Gary Chryst Don Correia Sandy Duncan Mercedes Ellington Sylviane Gold Jonathan Herzog Anna Kisselgoff Robert La Fosse Joe Lanteri Michael Milton Donna McKechnie Mary Beth O'Connor Laura Penn Wendy Perron Lee Roy Reams Andy Sandberg
An accomplished and versatile actress/singer/dancer, Chita Rivera has won two Tony Awards as Best Leading Actress in a Musical and received eight additional Tony nominations for an exceptional 10 Tony nominations. She recently starred in The Visit, the final John Kander/Fred Ebb/Terrence McNally musical directed by John Doyle and choreographed by Graciela Daniele on Broadway (2015), following the acclaimed production at the Williamstown Theatre Festival in the summer of 2014. She starred in the Broadway revival of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, the Broadway and touring productions of The Dancer's Life, a dazzling new musical celebrating her spectacular career, written by Terrence McNally and directed by Graciela Daniele and the revival of the Broadway musical Nine with Antonio Banderas. She trained as a ballerina (from age 11) before receiving a scholarship to the School of American Ballet from legendary George Balanchine.
Chita's first appearance (age 17) was as a principal dancer in Call Me Madam. Her electric performance as Anita in the original Broadway premiere of West Side Story brought her stardom, which she repeated in London. Her career is highlighted by starring roles in Bye Bye Birdie, The Rink (Tony Award), Chicago, Jerry's Girls, Kiss of the Spider Woman (Tony Award), and the original Broadway casts of Guys and Dolls, Can-Can, Seventh Heaven and Mr. Wonderful. On tour: Born Yesterday, The Rose Tattoo, Call Me Madam, Threepenny Opera, Sweet Charity, Kiss Me Kate, Zorba, Can-Can with The Rockettes.
Chita was awarded The Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama in 2009. She received the coveted Kennedy Center Honor in 2002 and became the first Hispanic woman ever chosen to receive this award. In November, 2016 she headlined at Carnegie Hall and in 2015, Great Performances aired their special Chita Rivera: A Lot of Livin' To Do, a retrospective of her extraordinary life and career nationally on PBS. Chita's current solo CD is entitled And Now I Swing. Her most treasured production is her daughter, singer/dancer/choreographer Lisa Mordente.
American Dance Machine for the 21st Century (ADM21), founded in 2012 by Nikki Feirt Atkins, is dedicated to creating a living and vibrant archive of classic and current notable musical theater choreography. ADM21 is continuing the legacy of the late Lee Theodore, a noted Broadway dancer, choreographer and director, who established The American Dance Machine in 1976 as a "Living Archive" of musical theater dance to address her belief that "many great choreographic works are lost with the musical they once embellished." Of concern was that the artistry of each dance would vanish with the artists who created them. American Dance Machine for the 21st Century, based in New York City, strives to be a leading center for musical theater dance and to perpetuate the excellence of this genre through the education, preservation and presentation of classic and current notable works of musical theater choreography. ADM21's educational program has been established to inspire and enrich musical theater dance students and budding choreographers in the development of distinctive artistic expression, through an expanded course of dance instruction, which unites the work of musical theater's founding choreographers and teachers, with current styles and trends. www.ADM21.org
The NYC Dance Alliance Foundation, Inc. (NYCDAF), founded in 2010 by Executive Director Joe Lanteri, is committed to broadening performing arts awareness while advocating education and high standards of excellence in dance. The Foundation invests in the next generation of professional performers by offering scholarships for secondary and college education. To date, over 200 talented teenagers have shared in nearly $2 million awarded directly through NYCDAF. Those recipients are represented in 42 of the most prestigious university arts programs in the country. Many have since graduated and are now represented on Broadway, as well concert dance companies based in NYC and around the world. www.NYCDAFoundation.net